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AM Briefing: Strategies to improve sales

Dealers face a growing challenge in the aftermarket as they seek strategies that will sustain and grow their business in the face of increased competition, higher customer expectations and a decline in traditional service and repair business.

In the first AM Briefing, a small group of aftersales managers joined AM editor Stephen Briers, news editor Tim Rose, and Kevin Wright, Shell Helix’s UK consumer lubricants business manager, to discuss some of the issues and processes facing service and repair departments.

Profitability of the aftersales department has declined in the last five to 10 years – that’s a point all our invited managers agree on. Longer service intervals as a result of carmakers’ attempts to cut running costs for fleets, better product durability and standard three-year warranties have all reduced the number of times a workshop can make a sale. Exacerbating matters are increased overheads from investment in equipment and meeting franchise standards.

Dealers need to grasp every opportunity on offer. Lexus in Reading has an “implant” worker from a tyre company as it looks to built its share in this part of the market. Octagon Motor Company group aftersales manager Keith Barnard, also centre principal of Lexus Reading, says it is already an important profit stream...(continues in AM June 2 edition)

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    Aftersales managers discuss what works – and what doesn’t

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